Adding Live Plants to Your Bearded Dragon Tank: A Comprehensive Guide

How to put live plants in bearded dragon tank

Why Live Plants are Beneficial for Your Bearded Dragon Tank

Adding live plants to your bearded dragon tank can greatly enhance the overall well-being and health of your pet. Plants provide numerous benefits that contribute to a natural and stimulating environment for your dragon. Here are some reasons why incorporating live plants into their habitat is essential:

Purify the Air

Plants are natural air purifiers and can help to improve the air quality within your dragon tank. They absorb carbon dioxide and release oxygen, which is crucial for your dragon’s respiratory health. The presence of plants can also help to filter out toxins and pollutants, creating a cleaner and healthier enclosure for your pet.

Create a Natural Environment

Live plants help to create a more natural and aesthetically pleasing environment for your bearded dragon. They mimic their natural habitat, making them feel more at home and reducing stress. The inclusion of plants also provides hiding spots and climbing structures, allowing your dragon to engage in natural behaviors and promote mental stimulation.

Offer a Source of Enrichment

Bearded dragons are curious creatures that require mental stimulation to thrive. Live plants provide opportunities for exploration and interaction. Your dragon can investigate and interact with the plants, adding enrichment to their daily routine. They can also provide a source of entertainment, as your dragon might enjoy watching insects that are attracted to the plants.

Improve Digestion and Nutrition

Enhance the Overall Aesthetic Appeal

Add plants to your bearded dragon tank to transform it into a visually appealing display. The vibrant colors, textures, and shapes of the plants can create an attractive and natural-looking habitat. This not only pleases the eye but also provides a more enjoyable viewing experience for you and your guests.

Benefits: Explanation:
Air purification Plants absorb carbon dioxide and release oxygen, improving air quality.
Natural environment Live plants create a more natural and stress-free habitat for your dragon.
Enrichment Plants provide opportunities for exploration and entertainment.
Digestion and nutrition Edible plants can improve digestion and provide additional nutrients.
Aesthetic appeal Live plants enhance the visual appeal of your dragon tank.

Choosing the Right Plants for Your Bearded Dragon Tank

When selecting plants, opt for those that are native to arid environments, as this closely mimics the natural habitat of bearded dragons. Desert-friendly plants like Aloe vera, Snake Plant, and Sedum are excellent choices. These plants are drought-tolerant and can thrive in the dry conditions of the tank.

Another factor to consider is the size and growth pattern of the plants. Choose plants that will not outgrow the tank or overwhelm the space. Bearded dragons need ample room to move around and bask, so selecting compact plants is ideal. Dwarf varieties of succulents and cacti are suitable options that won’t take up too much space.

Lastly, consider the ease of care for the plants you choose. Bearded dragon tanks require specific temperature and lighting conditions, and certain plants may have different care requirements. Opt for plants that can tolerate the temperature and lighting conditions of your tank without excessive maintenance. This will ensure that your plants can thrive and stay healthy in the dragon tank.

Creating a Natural Habitat with Live Plants

One of the most important aspects of setting up a bearded dragon tank is creating a natural habitat. Live plants can play a crucial role in achieving this goal. By incorporating live plants into the tank, you can create a more natural and aesthetically pleasing environment for your bearded dragon.

To put live plants in your bearded dragon tank, you will need to consider their placement and arrangement. Place the plants in pots or containers with suitable substrate or soil. This will provide support and nutrients for the plants to grow. Arrange the plants in a way that mimics their natural habitat, creating hiding spots and climbing structures for your dragon.

Steps to put live plants in your bearded dragon tank:
1. Select suitable plants that can tolerate tank conditions.
2. Choose pots or containers with appropriate substrate or soil.
3. Place the plants in the pots, ensuring they are stable.
4. Arrange the plants in the tank, considering hiding spots and climbing structures.
5. Monitor the plants regularly and provide necessary care, such as watering and fertilizing.

Live plants not only enhance the visual appeal of your dragon tank but also provide numerous benefits. They can improve air quality by filtering out toxins and producing oxygen. Live plants also help to maintain humidity levels in the tank, which is essential for your dragon’s overall health and well-being.

By creating a natural habitat with live plants, you can provide a more enriching and stimulating environment for your bearded dragon. This can promote their natural behaviors, such as exploring, hiding, and climbing. Additionally, live plants can offer additional nutritional value to your dragon’s diet.

Overall, incorporating live plants into your bearded dragon tank is an important step in providing a healthy and aesthetically pleasing habitat for your pet. With careful selection, placement, and maintenance, your dragon can thrive in a natural and vibrant environment.

The Importance of UVB Lighting for Plant Growth

UVB lighting plays a vital role in photosynthesis, a process that allows plants to convert light energy into nutrients. Without the proper amount of UVB lighting, plants will struggle to undergo photosynthesis, leading to stunted growth or even death. Additionally, UVB lighting helps to regulate plant hormone production, which is essential for their development and overall health.

In addition to UVB lighting, it is crucial to provide an adequate duration and intensity of light for your plants. Most live plants require around 10-12 hours of light per day, with a brightness level of approximately 5,000-6,000 lumens. To achieve optimal growth, it is recommended to place the UVB light bulb within a suitable distance from the plant, ensuring it receives the necessary amount of light without causing burn or stress.

Proper lighting not only benefits the growth of your live plants, but it also contributes to the overall health of your bearded dragon. UVB rays play a significant role in their calcium metabolism and the synthesis of vitamin D3, which is essential for their bone and overall health.

How to Pot and Arrange Plants in Your Dragon Tank

Adding live plants to your bearded dragon tank can greatly enhance its overall aesthetics and provide numerous benefits for your pet’s health and well-being. Properly potting and arranging the plants in your dragon tank is crucial to ensure their growth and create a natural environment for your beardie. Here is a step-by-step guide on how to pot and arrange plants in your bearded dragon tank:

1. Selecting the Right Containers: Choose appropriately sized pots or containers for your plants. Make sure they have drainage holes to prevent waterlogging.

2. Preparing the Potting Mix: Use a well-draining potting mix specifically formulated for reptiles. Avoid using soil from your garden as it may contain harmful chemicals or parasites.

3. Potting the Plants: Gently remove the plants from their nursery pots, being careful not to damage the roots. Place the plant in the prepared potting mix and gently press the soil around the roots to secure it in place.

4. Arranging the Plants: Consider the size and growth habits of the plants when arranging them in your dragon tank. Place taller plants towards the back of the tank to create depth, and shorter plants towards the front.

5. Creating Climbing Structures: Use driftwood, vines, or other reptile-safe materials to create climbing structures for your dragon. Position the plants near these structures to provide hiding spots and climbing opportunities.

6. Providing Adequate Lighting: Place the potted plants in areas of the tank where they can receive proper lighting. Bearded dragons require both UVB and UVA light for their overall health and plant growth. Ensure that the plants are not obstructing the UVB lighting source.

7. Watering and Moisture: Maintain proper hydration levels for your plants by misting them with water regularly. Be careful not to overwater as this can lead to root rot. Monitor the soil moisture and adjust watering accordingly.

8. Monitoring Growth and Maintenance: Regularly monitor the growth of your plants and trim any dead or damaged leaves. Rotate the plants periodically to ensure even exposure to light. Remove any fallen leaves or debris from the tank to prevent mold or pests.

Conclusion: Potting and arranging live plants in your bearded dragon tank requires careful consideration of the plant’s needs and the dragon’s habitat. By following these steps, you can create a natural and visually pleasing environment for your bearded dragon, while providing them with the benefits of live plants.

How to Put Live Plants in Your Bearded Dragon Tank

Adding live plants to your bearded dragon tank is a great way to create a natural and stimulating environment for your pet. Not only do live plants provide aesthetic appeal, but they also offer numerous benefits for both your bearded dragon and the overall health of the tank. Here is a comprehensive guide on how to properly put live plants in your bearded dragon tank:

Before adding live plants to your bearded dragon tank, it’s essential to select species that are safe and suitable for reptile habitats. Opt for plants that are non-toxic and hardy enough to withstand the conditions in the tank. Some suitable options include pothos, spider plants, and bromeliads.

2. Preparing the plants:

Ensure that the live plants you choose are free from any harmful substances such as pesticides or fertilizers. It’s advisable to rinse the plants thoroughly to remove any potential contaminants. Additionally, trimming the roots may be necessary to fit the plants into the tank properly.

3. Planting the live plants:

When placing the live plants in the tank, consider the size and layout of the enclosure. Create a natural and visually pleasing environment by arranging the plants in different heights and positions. Dig a small hole in the substrate and gently place the plants, ensuring the roots are covered with soil.

4. Providing proper lighting and hydration:

Live plants in your bearded dragon tank require adequate lighting and hydration for growth. Install UVB lighting to ensure plants receive the necessary light spectrum for photosynthesis. It’s also crucial to maintain proper hydration levels by misting the plants daily or using a drip system.

Important Tip:
Monitor the moisture levels in the tank carefully to prevent overwatering, as excess moisture can lead to bacterial or fungal growth.

5. Maintenance and care:

Regularly inspect the live plants in your bearded dragon tank to ensure they are healthy and free from any signs of damage or disease. Trim any dead or decaying parts of the plants to maintain their appearance and overall health. Additionally, periodically rotate or replant the live plants to promote even growth.


By following these steps, you can successfully incorporate live plants into your bearded dragon tank. Not only will the live plants enhance the aesthetic appeal of the enclosure, but they will also contribute to a more natural and stimulating habitat for your bearded dragon. Remember to choose the right plants, provide proper lighting and hydration, and regularly maintain and care for the live plants to ensure their longevity and benefit to both your pet and the tank.

Bearded dragons are omnivores, meaning they eat both plant matter and animal proteins. In the wild, they have a diverse diet consisting of insects, fruits, vegetables, and flowers. As a responsible owner, it’s your duty to replicate this diet as closely as possible in the tank environment.

Another essential nutrient for bearded dragons is vitamin D3. Vitamin D3 is required for effective calcium absorption. In the wild, bearded dragons would obtain vitamin D3 through exposure to sunlight. However, in a tank environment, it’s necessary to provide UVB lighting to mimic natural sunlight and promote the synthesis of vitamin D3 in their bodies.

When choosing plants for your bearded dragon tank, consider their nutritional value. Opt for plants that are high in fiber and water content, such as collard greens, kale, and mustard greens. These leafy greens provide essential vitamins and minerals necessary for your dragon’s overall health.

It’s also important to offer a variety of fruits and vegetables to ensure a well-rounded diet. Bearded dragons enjoy a range of fruits, including berries, apples, and watermelon. Vegetables such as bell peppers, squash, and carrots are also beneficial additions to their diet.

Lastly, be aware of plants that are toxic to bearded dragons. Some common houseplants, like philodendron and pothos, can be harmful if ingested. Always research the plants you plan to introduce to your dragon tank to ensure they are safe for consumption.

By monitoring and adjusting your dragon’s diet, you can ensure they receive optimal nutrition and maintain good health. Remember, live plants provide some valuable nutrients, but they should be supplemented with a varied and balanced diet to meet all of your bearded dragon’s nutritional needs.

Preventing Plant Toxicity and Ensuring Safety

Before putting any plants in your dragon tank, thoroughly research the specific plants you are considering to ensure they are safe for your pet. Some common houseplants, such as pothos and spider plants, are safe options that can add a touch of greenery to the tank without posing a threat to your dragon.

Another aspect of safety to consider is the use of pesticides or fertilizers on your plants. These chemicals can be harmful to your dragon if ingested, so it’s best to avoid using them altogether. Instead, opt for natural methods of pest control, such as regularly inspecting the plants for pests and manually removing them if necessary.


By taking precautions to prevent plant toxicity and ensure the safety of your bearded dragon, you can create a beautiful and natural habitat for your pet. With the right selection of non-toxic plants and careful observation, you can provide your dragon with a safe and stimulating environment. Remember to always research the plants you choose and keep an eye on your dragon’s behavior to ensure their well-being.

How to Control Pests and Diseases in Your Bearded Dragon Tank

One of the challenges of maintaining live plants in a bearded dragon tank is dealing with pests and diseases that can potentially harm both the plants and your pet. Here are some tips on how to control and prevent these issues:

  • Regularly inspect your plants for any signs of pests such as aphids, mites, or fungus gnats. These can be harmful to the plants and can also be carriers of diseases.
  • If you spot pests, you can try removing them manually using tweezers or by spraying the affected areas with a mild soapy water solution. Be careful not to use any chemicals that can be toxic to your bearded dragon.
  • To prevent pests from infesting your plants, you can introduce natural predators such as ladybugs or predatory mites. These can help keep pest populations under control.
  • Ensure that your tank has proper ventilation to prevent the buildup of moisture, which can attract pests and promote the growth of mold and fungus. You can use a fan or open the tank’s lid periodically to allow for air circulation.
  • Monitor the health of your bearded dragon regularly. A sick or stressed dragon is more susceptible to diseases, which can then spread to the plants. Ensure that your pet receives proper nutrition, UVB lighting, and appropriate temperature and humidity levels.
  • If you notice any signs of diseases on your plants such as wilting, discoloration, or unusual growths, it is essential to take action promptly. Remove and isolate the affected plant to prevent the spread of the disease to other plants.
  • Consult with a veterinarian specializing in reptiles if you are unsure about the health of your bearded dragon or need specific advice on dealing with plant-related issues.

By following these guidelines, you can maintain a healthy and thriving plant ecosystem in your bearded dragon tank while ensuring the well-being of your pet. Remember to regularly monitor and take preventive measures to keep pests and diseases at bay.

How to Adjust Lighting and Temperature for Plants in Your Bearded Dragon Tank

Proper lighting and temperature are essential for the healthy growth of plants in your bearded dragon tank. To ensure that your plants receive the right amount of light and heat, follow these steps:

1. Positioning the Light Source:

Place the UVB light source in a position where it can provide direct exposure to the plants. This will help the plants in photosynthesis and ensure their proper growth.

2. Adjusting the Light Intensity:

Monitor the light intensity in the tank and adjust it according to the needs of the plants. Some plants require more light while others prefer shade. Adjust the position or intensity of the light accordingly to cater to the specific requirements of your plants.

3. Providing Adequate Heat:

Bearded dragons require a specific temperature range to thrive, but plants have different temperature requirements. Ensure that the heat source in the tank is not too close to the plants, as it can lead to overheating and damage their foliage. Place the heat source at an appropriate distance to maintain the optimal temperature for both your dragon and plants.

4. Using Timers:

Consider using timers for your lighting and heating sources. This will help you maintain a consistent schedule and ensure that your plants receive sufficient light and heat throughout the day, even when you are not available to manually adjust the settings.

5. Monitoring and Adjusting:

By following these guidelines, you can create an environment that promotes the healthy growth of plants in your bearded dragon tank. Remember to consider the specific needs of your plants and make adjustments accordingly.

Providing Proper Substrate and Soil for Plant Growth

Choosing the right substrate

Some suitable substrate options for a bearded dragon tank include:

  • Sand: Sand can provide good drainage and allows for easy burrowing, which bearded dragons enjoy. However, make sure to use reptile-safe sand without any additives.
  • Reptile carpet: Reptile carpet is a safe and easy-to-maintain option that provides a stable surface for plants to root in. It is also easily cleaned and reused.
  • Paper towels or newspaper: These are inexpensive and easy to replace, but they do not provide ideal conditions for plant growth and may need to be modified for better drainage.

Preparing the soil

Before adding the soil to the tank, it is recommended to sterilize it by baking it in the oven at a low temperature. This will help kill any harmful bacteria or pests that may be present in the soil.

When potting the plants, make sure to leave enough space for their roots to grow and spread. It is also important to choose appropriate-sized pots or containers that will fit well in the tank and allow for proper drainage.

By providing the proper substrate and soil, you can ensure that your live plants have the best conditions for growth in your bearded dragon tank. This will not only enhance the aesthetics of the tank but also provide additional benefits for your bearded dragon’s health and well-being.

Adding Live Plants as Hideouts and Climbing Structures

Step Instructions
1 Choose plants that have sturdy stems and branches, which can serve as climbing structures for your dragon. Some suitable options include pothos, hibiscus, and spider plants.
2 Place the plants in areas of the tank where your dragon likes to climb or perch. This could be near basking spots, ledges, or branches.
3 Ensure that the plants are securely potted and positioned so that they won’t easily tip over or fall, which could potentially harm your dragon.
4 Consider adding branches or other climbing structures in addition to the plants to create a more diverse and engaging environment for your dragon.
5 Monitor your dragon’s behavior to see which plants and structures they prefer. You may need to make adjustments or add more plants in certain areas to accommodate your dragon’s preferences.
6 Regularly inspect the plants and structures for any signs of damage or wear. Replace or repair them as needed to ensure the safety of your dragon.

By providing live plants as hideouts and climbing structures, you can create a more stimulating and enriching environment for your bearded dragon. Not only will this enhance their physical and mental well-being, but it will also make their tank more visually appealing. Remember to choose appropriate plants, secure them properly, and monitor their condition to ensure the safety and enjoyment of your dragon.

Enhancing the Aesthetic Appeal of Your Dragon Tank with Live Plants

Variety and Contrast: Incorporating different types of plants with varying colors, shapes, and sizes can create a visually pleasing contrast in your dragon tank. For example, you can combine tall and bushy plants with trailing or climbing vines to add depth and dimension to the enclosure.

Focal Points: Use larger or more striking plants as focal points in your dragon tank. These plants can draw attention and become a centerpiece of the enclosure. Choose plants with unique foliage patterns or colorful flowers to create a stunning visual impact.

Arrangement and Placement: The way you arrange and place your live plants can greatly contribute to the overall aesthetics of the tank. Create a balanced and harmonious composition by strategically positioning plants in different areas of the enclosure. Consider using a mix of heights and sizes to create a visually appealing arrangement.

Seasonal Decorations: Take advantage of the changing seasons by incorporating seasonal plants or decorations in your dragon tank. For example, you can add small pumpkins or gourds during Halloween or festive poinsettias during the winter holidays. This not only adds a festive touch but also keeps the tank visually interesting and engaging.

Natural Background: Live plants can also be used to create a natural background or backdrop in your dragon tank. By planting taller plants against the back wall of the enclosure, you can create a lush and leafy backdrop that adds depth and interest to the overall aesthetic appeal.

Benefit Explanation
Improved Aesthetics Live plants add vibrant colors and natural beauty to your dragon tank, enhancing its overall visual appeal.
Increased Dimension By incorporating different plant sizes and shapes, you can create a visually stimulating and dimensional enclosure.
Seasonal Variation Add seasonal plants or decorations to keep the tank visually interesting and engaging throughout the year.
Natural Background Using taller plants as a backdrop creates a lush and leafy background, giving a natural feel to the tank.